We, as consumers, continue to grow our expectations preferring a variety of options at our finger-tips and wanting a local presence. We are influenced by retailers offering an easy solution including fast delivery times, click and collect, easy returns as well as a wide product choice and availability.

The challenge for both retailers and logistics providers is how to join up all of these demands to ensure they provide an attractive offer for the consumer, whilst maintaining a sustainable and cost-effective solution.

The market forecasts predict that £92msq.ft of Grade A logistics space is required over the next 3 years in order to accommodate this continued demand.  We can also expect to see more urban logistics facilities supporting the retailers to improve efficiencies on the local delivery model and what is known as the ‘Last Mile’. 

We caught up with Director Tim Leach, who heads up the Civil & Structural team at Waldeck and has a vast experience across the Logistics sector, to find out more:

“Delivery plays a vital role in attracting and retaining customers for retailers across the UK, with an enormous 79% of people switching retailer due to delivery method. To highlight the importance of fast delivery, 52% of consumers list ‘quick delivery’ as their top or second most important priority.  

“This ‘Last Mile’ has a significant impact for retailers, putting huge demand on availability of products and reliability of service, as well as providing an effective cost model.

“In order to support the UK’s economy and help the logistics sector meet these challenging demands, Waldeck recognise that design of existing and new facilities needs to address more and more factors in order to deliver a space that accommodates:

  • More activities and products
  • More people
  • More technology and automation
  • More data
  • More sophistication and higher specifications
  • More tailored solutions
  • More sustainability
  • More efficient energy solutions

“There will also be the need for greater flexibility when it comes to warehouse capacity requirements, including:

  • Flexible capacity
  • Flexible locations
  • Flexible workforce
  • Flexible leases
  • Flexible multimodal transport options

“The advantage we have at Waldeck is that we understand the logistics market and having an internal multi-disciplinary team means we have specialists that can consider all of the above requirements and bring them into the design. 

“This can start from the Commercial team being involved with the developer at the early stage of site finding, ground surveys and investigations, digital concept integrated with the engineering design through to contractor procurement and full project management. We also consider the lifecycle of the facility in what we call our Cradle-to-Grave approach.

“Having worked in other sectors including Automotive, Data Centres, Rail & Ports and Renewable Energy we have transferrable knowledge around planning restrictions, security, legislation, asset management that are an integral part of any facility design.”

If you have any questions about how Waldeck could assist your next project, we welcome the opportunity to discuss this with you further. Please don’t hesitate to get in touch with Tim by calling 08450 990285 or sending him an email here.